Board of Directors
Elaine’s background is in education and psychology and she spent several years teaching grades 4, 5, & 6 before moving into special education.
Her love of animals was encouraged by her parents. They taught her that to own an animal meant taking on a great responsibility, never to be taken lightly. It seemed inevitable that from this beginning, a passion for caring for special needs dogs should grow.
Elaine and Rick are co-founders of Dog Lodge Sanctuary. They live in Hempstead with their 11 rescued dogs.
Dan Woods is a practicing attorney in Houston, Tx. He was a CPA in the tax department of a national accounting firm prior to beginning his legal career. His undergraduate and law degree are both from the University of Texas. The focus of his practice is representation of closely-held businesses, their owners, and trust and estates. His wife Nyla, a CPA, has served in executive positions with not-for-profit organizations. Dan and Nyla have been dog owners for 25+ years, presently devoted to their lab-cross Beau. He is a “foundling” abandoned or lost in rural Texas. Beau recently celebrated his eighth anniversary at the Woods’ household.
Rick Laminack is a lawyer with the Houston firm of Laminack, Pirtle & Martines. He is a magna cum laude graduate of South Texas College of Law Houston. Rick’s dedication to fighting on behalf of others has led him to be a tireless supporter of animals. He and Elaine live with 11 rescued dogs and together they have founded Dog Lodge Sanctuary.
Cathi has always loved animals. As a kid any dog, cat, bird, raccoon, fawn or snake that was found was brought home and I asked if I could keep it. As an adult, Cathi is drawn to the abused with issues – throw away animals no one wants. She is the proud owner of a once abused German Shepherd female, a three legged high energy Shepherd male with issues that she is working on and a beautiful Arabian horse that someone decided to throw away.
Cathi is an RN. She has enjoyed being involved with animals in one way or another. She volunteered with the Wildlife Center of Texas and the Wildlife Aide of Surrey, England. She also spent 7 years volunteering with Caring Critters Therapy group, the first group to take animals to MD Anderson Cancer Hospital and a miniature horse to Texas Children Hospital.
Vegan/animal activist, social entrepreneur, wine enthusiast/international panel judge and former oil & gas/energy executive. Currently working with startups, fellow incubators, accelerators, private equities, angels, fund managers, non-profits and global think tanks focused on environment, disruptive clean technologies, conservation, sustainability, animal welfare, clean meat and plant-based food production, economic development, empowerment, humanitarian aid, holism and food supply.
Sarah is a computer analyst, focusing on Technology markets. Originally from the UK, she moved to Houston in 2018 bringing her rescue animals with her. Sarah is a huge lover of animals and in her spare time fosters stray cats for another charity. We were very happy when she started volunteering with Dog Lodge over a year ago. Sarah manages our Instagram page and every Sunday morning she spends quality time with our residents – walking them or spending cuddle time with them.
Sarah has made a commitment to help animals in need. Her level of compassion makes her a perfect fit for our Board.
Theresa’s love for all creatures great and small began at an early age. Growing up, she was always surrounded by big dogs and her special affinity for the larger breeds continues today. Her current fur baby, a 95-pound silver lab rules her heart and home.
After serving four years in the US Army, Theresa began her career in healthcare administration and has been blessed to be included in the ranks of Texas Children’s Hospital, Baylor College of Medicine and Flex Orthopedic Services.
She has spent the last 13 years as a devoted elected volunteer of the Heron Lakes Estates Owners Association, currently serving as President of the Board of Directors.
Theresa also enjoys supporting animal rights and the groups that protect them including the Texas Humane Legislation Network, Best Friends Animal Society, Friends for Life and Silver Muzzle Cottage.
Molly is the owner of Donut Junkie, a high-end mini donut catering business based out of The Woodlands. She’s also an actor, a spin instructor, mom of two, and a military wife.
Molly’s family had the incredible opportunity to bring their senior foster, Keats, to Dog Lodge after they spent 6-months looking for her forever home. The experience was incredible. Knowing Keats would be completely medically taken care of and loved and cared for in a way like no other, put them at ease with their decision. The whole family has visited Keats and other residents since and they couldn’t be happier to brag about such a one-of-a-kind sanctuary that their “Sweet Keats” gets to live in and thrive at for the rest of her beautiful life.
The Dog Lodge Sanctuary is something Molly believes in because she’s seen firsthand how a precious, innocent animal went from a place of abandonment to a place to call home.
Chris Govekar is Command Executive Officer (Chief Executive) of the only US Army Reserve organization explicitly focused on bringing innovative technologies and processes from Academia and the Private Sector to the Department of the Army by means of developing partnerships and assisting organizations/researchers in understanding and solving the most significant problems/needs facing the World’s premier Ground Combat Force. He regularly connects with the Department of the Army and Army research laboratories and organizations; maintains close contact with Army Materiel Command, Research, Development and Engineering Command (RDECOM) and the Army Futures Command; advises the Commanding General, a member of the Defense Innovation Board (DIB) on all aspects of public-private partnership and solutions available in industry and academia and builds and maintains connections with academic institutions and researchers. And…..he loves his two Miniature Schnauzers, Max and Jack….
Jill Butler is a dog groomer by profession. She owns and operates a very successful dog grooming establishment in Houston that keeps her very, very busy. She has worked with animals for more than 35 years. She has worked with veterinarians, and trained and showed obedience dogs. She has never turned down the opportunity to rescue a dog and has even fostered dogs for others. Jill’s generosity and compassion have led her into volunteer work with the Special Children’s Committee, one of the Houston Rodeo committees, for the last 10 years and with SIRE, and equine initiative to help people with disabilities.